Although the community’s lamentation of the lack of Steam support for Battlefield 3 is not completely unfounded, it’s a little ridiculous to think that people will skip out on one of the biggest games of the year simply because they have to download a new client to play it. During my time with the Alpha build of Battlefield 3, Origin performed just fine, and although it wasn’t the prettiest application, it accomplished everything it needed to.
In order to fully understand what EA is trying to do with Origin, think of the client as a new console launch. The software needs a killer app to draw people to it, and once the initial audience has been captured with that kickass game (in this case, BF3) they’re more likely to stick around and use everything the software has to offer. Remember, just because you have to download Origin to play BF3 doesn’t mean your Steam account suddenly becomes useless and that platform goes to hell. The two are competing rivals, sure, but that doesn’t mean that the consumer can’t use both. They’re both free, they both act as digital distribution software, and if anything, the direct competition with one another will ultimately benefit customers.
Although it’s quite likely that most EA games will launch exclusively on the Origin software from now on (actually, you can count on it) there may be other titles that also launch on the service, which ultimately gives gamers more options, and provokes price wars to compete for your hard-earned cash. If the fact that you can’t play Battlefield 3 on Steam is enough to convince you that the game isn’t worth your money, let’s be honest, you probably weren’t very interested to begin with. In the long run, this could be a shitty move and really hurt the franchise, but at least it’s a hell of a lot better than Modern Warfare 2’s PC options and actually has some semblance of potential. Snuff out your torches and put the pitchforks back in the shed, people, it’s Battlefield 3. Battle-fucking-field 3! C’mon!